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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 19 Sep 2003
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Suzuki GSX600F-capable for a ride from Eastern-Europe to Ind

Greetings, dear fellow-HUBBers!

I'm planning to do the trip to India and Nepal, via Turkey, Iran and Pakistan.

I got 1998 Suzuki GSX 600 F. Have already done 26 000km with it since i bought it last winter. Have seen people who've done 100 000+km with the same engine (older models) and also i know a guy who had 300 000+km on the clock - bike works still prefect, only some usual maintaence, adjustmets and replacements done on the bike - oil, filters, cables and chain. So to trust the facts i'd classify this bike as very reliable one.

So can anybody tell from his/her experiences - can this type of bike (sport-touring) be functional to ride in India and Nepal, or i need to look into off-road side of the motorcycles to get this trip done?

Bike weights 208kg in dry, some adequate touring modifications are done with it, gots about 200 litres of luggage room available and i'm plannig to do a two-up trip. I've got many experiences on offroad conditions too with the bike with all the stuff on, see:

http://homepage.mac.com/nemos/PhotoAlbum23.html

Let me know your opinions about the Iran/Pakistan/India/Nepal roads with this type of bike - worth or not?!

With the best wishes, Margus (Estonia, Eastern-Europe)


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  #2  
Old 19 Sep 2003
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Yeah the bike will be fine for that trip, which you can do all the way from the UK to Kathmandu on tarmac.... the only time this may change is if they decide to dig the road up in pakistan while your there, they have a tenndancy to dig up 20 or 30k stretches at a time and then you will be on firmish dirt road for a while... but apart from this there is no reason why it wont be black stuff all the way. And a well maintained Bandit has a pretty tried and tested motor with a good reliability record, you wont be able to get parts once you leave Istanbul, but i couldnt for a KTM either.... the luggage will take a bit of a hammering over time though, so want to make sure that is as sturdy as pos.

Best of luck and have a good trip....

William
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  #3  
Old 19 Sep 2003
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Sorry, just noticed your from Estonia, i should be arriving in Helsinki, sorry everyone, backpacking now!!! with a view to spend some time in russia and then head down through Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania into Poland.... no firm dates for being in Estonia yet but if you wanna meet for a when im there, send me an email directly....
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Old 19 Sep 2003
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Greets, William.

Yes, you're welcome here. Just let me know - Estonia is pretty small, you can do a circle around it in one day if not visiting the islands.

Pics from the islands you find:
http://homepage.mac.com/nemos/PhotoAlbum18.html
http://homepage.mac.com/nemos/PhotoAlbum23.html

If you're interested to see some places in Estonia too, then i can pick them up for you on the map.

You're riding KTM then? - I know many professional KTM riders and technicians as well, so you possibly can fix all the technical problems in Estonia indeed if you have some till then.

Let me know when you arrive.

Regards, Margus
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Old 20 Sep 2003
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Have already emailed you directly about stuff, but just wanted to add that after looking at those pics i am absolutely gutted the bike is just heading out of Sydney this week on its way home... thats life eh??!!??!!
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  #6  
Old 2 Nov 2003
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hi Margus,
can you answer a couple of questions for me please?
im going to use my 600FW for a tour a france (ooo! just the next country along, very ambitious!!!) and ive got a set of GIVI hard luggage waiting to fit, so mine will be almost exactly like yours.
1. with the luggage and rack fitted can you still use the under seat storage?
i know 3 hard boxes will be enough but under the seat is good for hiding things away.

2. how is the bike handling/fuel economy affected?

cheers mate

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Old 2 Nov 2003
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Greetings,

well, going to somewhere near country i.e. France is very good introduction in mototouring if you haven't done any trips in the past - it gives a lot of experience about your motorcycle and choosing the right equipment next time.

1. if you'll have the same Five Stars frame as i got, then you CAN use underseat storage 100%.

2. economy with fully loaded luggage is almost 1:1 the same as w/o the luggage if you drive at speeds till 80-90 kilometres per hour (50-55mph), for example if i drive constantly at 30km/h fully loaded and two up i got fuel consumption 4.5-5 litres of gas per 100 kilometres (around 45 mpg). But when going on autobahn's and highways where speeds exeeds easily 100- 160km/h (60-100mph) then the fuel consumption goes up exponentially with the luggage because of aerodynamic effects caused by side boxes creating a bigger radial area for incoming wind, altough GIVI boxes have very optimum aerodynamic design compared with flat-romb Touratech aluminiums for example, but you still hardly get 7 litres/100km (30mpg) at speeds 130km/h and up. Fuelconsumption in dense accelerating and stoping areas (i.e. cityes and towns, traffic) is 1:0,95 the same as w/o the luggage, it's just a matter of a bit bigger mass because of your extra luggage mass besides you, but that has minor effect for fuel consumption.

Handling is 1:1 the same as you get the bike moving. At very low speeds (i.e. usual human's walking speed) it's harder to maneuver with the massive luggage and two up. Don't loose critical point of balance or you need a good strong hands and legs to get the bike into the balance again. Altough you get used with it very soon spontaneusly, just take some practice.

NB! Don't maneuver too optimistically in dense traffic as without the luggege you've used to do to use motorcycle small radial size advances - with side boxes you can't always fit between the cars in traffic.

PS: oil your chain and check tire pressure often (owning tubless tire puncture fixing tools can become very helpful). Learn from my mistakes: I didn't have it, and i ride 200+km with flat rear tire one day - it just wasn't noticeable on the constant speed on direct road until we entered into the curves then it was little noticeable...

PPS: Some pics from our ride from Eastern Europe to Austria: http://homepage.mac.com/nemos/PhotoAlbum26.html

Kind regards, Margus
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  #8  
Old 4 Nov 2003
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thanks mate, well, like it or not the luggage is going on this weekend as the fittings have arrived at the shop. i have a wingrack, so i think it will be ok.

great pictures, you sure took a lot of kit!! i am solo on the bike so i will have plenty of room with 3X44Ltr boxes, may even only take the side boxes, and a tankbag for maps etc.

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